Kai Chronicles

Eating, exploring and enjoying life

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The Upside of Down

Considering I’m on a month-long get healthy kick, I haven’t felt very well since starting on August 1.

I was down for the count on day 2 with pain that I call withdrawal. Headache and low energy was surely due to lesser amounts of sugar and a ban from caffeine.

I have gone on and off caffeine for a year now but mostly; I have been caffeine-free. During the last week of July, when I knew another restriction period was coming up, I wasn’t as strict with it and consumed several cups of caffeinated coffee. I didn’t think my body would become addicted so fast, but it did. At least this time my headaches only lasted a day compared to up to 3 days in the past. Caffeine is one potent drug!  I even had to cancel a training session because I was in too much pain to perform.

Just when I settled into my newest regime of waking at 6:30am to meditate followed by 20-30 minutes of exercise, 6 year-old Master T got sick. He’s now on his 5th day off school but I contracted his illness on his 3rd day off. By his 4th day off, we all had it.

So, yesterday was a family stay at home, in bed day. All of us were unfit to be in public and Mr M had to have a day off work.

I must say, it wasn’t bad at all. Lazing in bed watching movies and the Olympics, napping on and off and having lots of extra cuddles is nothing to complain about. Mr M works 7 days a week most weeks so it’s not very often that a day in bed is possible. And how many couples with child (ren) would put everything else aside to spend 85% of the day in bed together anyway?

So next time the whole family is sick, why not take the opportunity to snuggle down to rest and re-connect. We may not be 100% better today but we are on the mend with a smile!

Now, it’s nap time again.

Remedies for the sickness.


Ways to Wellness for the Unwell

  1. Drink plenty lemon and honey drinks. Add 1-2 TBSP fresh lemon juice to a cup of boiling water. Stir in honey. Any measurements will do, it just depends on how tart/sweet you like it. Drink hot.
  2. Drink more. Plenty of water and fresh juices (if you have a juicer) are needed.
  3. Rest. Stay in bed. Be lazy. It’s vital.
  4. Sleep. Take Panadol/Tylenol if you need it to relieve body aches and get some shut-eye.
  5. Eat. Feed a cold, starve a fever.  Light meals like poached eggs on toast and homemade chicken soup/broth are age-old meals for the unwell. Fasting Restrict or limit all dairy if mucous is a problem.
  6. Go to the toilet. If you are not using the toilet several times a day, you are not drinking enough.  You want to release the unwanted toxins from your body.
  7. Supplement. Of course, vitamins and minerals are best found in the foods we eat but it doesn’t hurt to top up with a multi-vitamin or a daily vitamin C.
  8. Make and take. Apple cider vinegar is an all around daily tonic. Mix half a cup to half a cup of liquid honey to make a natural remedy for many ailments. Take 1 tsp 3 times daily.
  9. Think positive thoughts! I am well. I feel great. I am healthy.
  10. Hugs and smiles. It works for me!!!

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Flaxseed for Good Health

You don’t have to be in ill-health to enjoy flaxseed or oil.  Everyone can benefit from the nutritional and medicinal properties found in this humble seed.

The ancient flaxseed, or linseed, as it is also known, has been a favourite amongst farmers and veterinarians and is now touted as a modern-day super food for humans too.

Research has found flaxseed and oil to be extremely useful for:

  • Lowering cholesterol
  • Thinning the blood
  • Reducing acid reflux
  • Inhibiting cancer cells
  • Intestinal and digestive issues
  • Reducing/ridding constipation
  • Internal cleansing
  • General disease prevention

It is may also improve health and wellness for people suffering from:

  • Heart disease
  • Arthritis
  • Joint pain
  • Stress
  • Stomach ulcers
  • Obesity
  • Acne
  • Eczema
  • Diabetes

The flaxseed comes from the blue flowering plant, Linum usitatissimum. As well as being very useful to the farmers, the housewives also spun the plant fibre to make high quality beautiful linen, hence the name linseed.

Today, the linseed is popular with the health conscious for its high doses of Omega 3, fibre, lignans and micronutrients and is easily found on the shelves of most supermarkets. Look for linseed bread next time you’re doing the shopping!

LSA is a ground meal made from linseed, sunflower and almond (LSA) and is fantastic as a topping for oatmeal, cereal and muesli; sprinkled on stir-frys, soups, stews, salads or added to smoothies or milkshakes. LSA can also be added to baking: cakes, muffins and breads.  It is a valuable source of dietary fibre, protein and essential fatty acids.

TIP: When purchasing whole flaxseed, be sure to crush it to release the oils before consuming.

NOTEWORTHY: Flaxseed oil has a limited shelf life. Keep it in the fridge and be sure to use before the best by date.

CAUTION: Flaxseed contains high levels of lignans. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding or being treated for a particular health issue, please consult a health professional before adding flaxseed to your regular eating regime.


This recipe was published in the February 2003 edition of  Canadian Living (magazine). I am a keen collector of recipes and I am happy to share this one with you!!

1 cup flaxseed

1 cup each of: flour, wholemeal flour and bran

1 TBSP baking powder

1 tsp each of: baking soda(bi-carb) and cinnamon

1/2 tsp salt

2 eggs

1 and half cups of buttermilk

1 cup brown sugar

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 cup+ dried cranberries


Set aside 2 TBSP of flaxseed. In a food processor, grind the remaining flaxseed to make a fine meal. Transfer to a large bowl.

Add all the dry ingredients except the sugar. Combine well.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, buttermilk, sugar and oil; pour over the flour mixture.

Stir in the cranberries.

Spoon into lined or greased muffin tins; sprinkle with reserved flaxseed.

Bake at 375 F/190 C for 20 minutes. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.


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Eat to live or live to eat?

Welcome to kai chronicles!!

Kai is a common word and its meaning varies depending on your culture. I have connections to New Zealand and Japan and that is why I have chosen to call this blog kai chronicles.

According to Wikipedia:

In Māori, Kai means “food” (this one is absolutely true and used by many kiwis).

In Japanese, Kai may mean “change” or “the action to correct” or “concerning oneself with” (I will check this with Japanese mates). Notice how Wikipedia uses the word “may”.

So now I ask the age old question: Do you live to eat or eat to live?

I seem to be living to eat lately but I go through stages.

I have been attempting to be dairy, gluten, red meat, alcohol, fruit, sugar, yeast, caffeine,  fermented food FREE off and on for nearly 18 months now. Actually since 2005, I have experimented with many forms of food restrictions due to health issues.

It’s extremely hard to do but I have been successful, for short periods of time.

AND, the thing is this: When on the ‘restricted’ diet, I feel better!!! But after 4-6 weeks, I crack and cannot cope unless I eat a whole cake and once I do that, it’s all off until I have the will power to start all over again.

This I  know for sure: I’m an emotional eater.

My latest attempt, which was successful for 2 weeks then I introduced apples, potatoes and some other ‘sweet’ vegetables and all was well for anther 2 weeks before I started to cave, was smack in the middle of some emotional turbulance so it was probably not the best time to give it a go.

I am now enjoying most of the restrictions except: alcohol, dairy(except pro-biotic yogurt which is good for tummy health), caffeine and mostly staying away from yeast. If I crave a peanut butter sandwich, I’ll eat it.

I’ve been practicing ‘presence’ for nearly four years now. I rationalise my food intake with the NOW.

If this moment is all we have, I say, “EAT CAKE AND LOVE IT”.